If you have been assessed as needing care services, you may be offered direct payments under the new ‘Personalisation’ system

What is Personalisation?

Personalisation is a new system that gives you more choice and control over your life and the support you receive. It represents an important way of ensuring more people can continue to live independently in their own home. Through direct payments, Personalisation offers a new way to purchase your services, where and when you want to, using your personal budget. Personalisation allows you to know how much money you have to spend, lets you

choose how to spend the money and ensures you receive the support you need.

Can I access direct payments?

For people who need help to stay in their own home, every local council must now offer money to buy services (direct payments) instead of arranging services for them. All councils must also offer direct payments to people who lack mental capacity, which means that you may be able to help a relative by receiving and managing a

direct payment on his or her behalf.

The vast majority of people getting social services from the council should be able to receive direct payments, including:

● Older people who have been assessed as needing community care services

● Disabled people aged 16 and over

● Families with disabled children for children’s services

● Disabled parents for children’s services

How do i access direct payments?

If you decide you want to receive direct payments to make your own arrangements for the care you require rather than have the council make arrangements for you the first step is to discuss this with your social worker when they assess your care needs. If you are already in receipt services, contact your local council who will have established support for people wishing to use direct payment schemes.

To access direct payments you need an assessment in the same way you would for any social service.  If you have not previously had you needs assessed you will need to contact your local council to make arrangements.

Why would I want direct payments?

Direct payments allow individuals to make more of the decisions that affect their lives. They give flexibility and choice, by enabling people of all ages to purchase care for themselves that suits their individual needs. Direct payments allow you to decide how your needs will met, by whom and at what time.

This information is based on the Department of Health 2009 ‘A guide to receiving direct payments from your council’ publication which can viewed online by clicking here.